Early Fall Outerwear feat. Marwan Helal

October 15th, 2011

Autumn is transitional outerwear season.

Here, my long-time friend and style inspiration Marwan Helal (as featured previously here and here) shows us which lightweight outerwear pieces he uses to transition his clean, classic style from Summer to Fall.

1. Unlined Cotton Trench

“As Dan has written before – you can’t go wrong with a classic trench in a dark neutral color. I can wear this thing any day of the week, rain or shine, dressed up or down, for years to come…. It’s an investment piece”

Bonus Tip: It’s not overly thick, making it perfect for those in-between months, and it has enough room to layer knits under when it gets colder.

Bonus Tip II: Think about a versatile color. “I’m not going to spend a decent amount of money on something if I’m not going to wear it much… This piece is great because you can literally throw it on without much thought.”

Bonus Tip III: Unless you wear suit jackets daily, you’re trench should be cut to fit trimly through the shoulders and arms. Because I wear them more often without a jacket underneath, my trenches typically fit well over a shirt/sweater and slightly snug over a jacket.


Essential Light Gray Trouser

  • Brown leather lace-ups by JCrew ·
  • Navy trench coat by Club Monaco ·
  • Brown leather belt by JCrew ·
  • White s/s button-down shirt by American Apparel
  • · Grey trousers by Hugo Boss

2. Vintage Levi Trucker



“A beat up denim jacket looks good on almost anyone… It’s instant laid back cool”

Bonus Tip: Shop vintage for authentic looking distressing.

Bonus Tip II: Fold up the sleeves when the sun comes out.

Bonus Tip III: Marwan truly understands how to properly curate a wardrobe. Almost every piece in his closet can be interchanged with one another. He can literally get dressed in the dark and odds are his outfit will look put-together. Take a second and go through his prior features – you can mix-and-match to get hundreds of different outfits from the limited number of pieces he has chosen to feature. That’s smart shopping.

  • Red madras vintage pocket square ·
  • Red chinos by J.Crew ·
  • White shirt by Club Monaco ·
  • Wayfarer sunglasses by Ray-Ban ·
  • Denim jacket by Levis Vintage ·
  • Burgundy penny loafers by Bass

3. Down Vest


“This vest is thinner than the traditional down puffer, which I like because it’s more convenient for layering [over or under]… It also has a breast pocket which is practical for holding sunglasses or accessorizing with pocket squares.”

Bonus Tip: “This look is heavy in neutrals (navy, white, grey) so I went with a red-ish leather desert boot. Makes everything look more rich…in my opinion.”

  • Grey chinos by Club Monaco ·
  • Grey marled socks by Gap ·
  • Brown leather boots by Clarks ·
  • Blue pocket square (fabric swatch) ·
  • White striped shirt by Club Monaco ·
  • Navy quilted vest by J.Crew

4. Chunky Shawl Cardigan

Here’s another no-brainer: a chunky shawl cardigan looks refined and approachable on just about anybody.

Bonus Tip: You don’t have to spend a lot to look good. Keep it simple, keep it practical, keep it fitting well.


Sky Blue Broadcloth Shirt

  • Grey shawl collar sweater by JCrew ·
  • Brown leather boots by Sebago ·
  • Navy corduroys by H&M ·
  • Brown leather belt by JCrew
  • · Light blue shirt by Gap

5. Waxed Cotton Bomber


A lightweight cotton bomber is the perfect weekend jacket – it can take you anywhere – from a nice dinner with a lady friend, to a rowdy baseball game with the fellas.

Bonus Tip: “Here again I’m keeping the outfit fairly conservative and neutral, leaving the opportunity for a slightly off-color shoe.”

Bonus Tip II: “Rule of thumb is to match your belt to your shoes. I decided to match the belt to my soles instead… On that note, I think there can be something said about matching your belt to your pants….”


Khaki Cotton Trouser

  • Grey leather wingtips by Florsheim ·
  • Green v-neck sweater by JCrew ·
  • Cotton woven belt by Club Monaco ·
  • Blue plaid shirt by Steven Alan ·
  • Navy cotton bomber jacket by Club Monaco
  • · Khaki chinos by Ralph Lauren Polo

Thanks for reading.

Yours in style,

Dan Trepanier


Photography by ron&ron Photography.